Click on the button to get the indicated file
Top-level links to some of the more significant additions and
updates made at this site in reverse chronological order:
2016/11/27 Coup against U.S. Coup plots
Resolves (1774) Developed the issues that led to the
Declaration of Independence.
2015/04/16 The North Briton, Number 45,
John Wilkes. (1763) Inspired the Americans to demand their
rights, and when Wilkes and others were prosecuted for seditions
libel for this article, led the Americans to conclude there was
to be no reconciliation with the English crown; it also
insp[ired the First and Fourth Amendments.
2015/02/26 Howell's State Trials A Collection of important State Trials, from 1063 through
1815, compiled and edited by Thomas Bayly Howell, in 33 Volumes.
These cases provide precedents that defined many of the terms
used in the U.S. Constitution.
2014/12/12 A Caveat
Against Injustice, or An Inquiry into the Evils of a
Fluctuating Medium of Exchange, Roger Sherman, 1752.
One of the Framers presents his theory of money.
2014/11/29 A Treatise
on the Law of Citizenship, Prentiss Webster, 1891.
Early classic treatise.
2014/11/29 A Treatise
on American Citizenship, John S. Wise, 1906. Early
Legal-Tender Acts, considered in relation to their
constitutionality and their political economy,
Samuel T. Spear, 1875. Early classic treatise.
2014/11/29 The Theory
of the Common Law, James M. Walker, 1852. Early
2014/11/29 A Treasury
of Legal Quotations, ed. Paul C. Cook, 1961.
2014/11/29 A Treatise
on the Law Concerning Names and Changes of Name,
Arthur Charles Fox-Davies, 1906. Early classic treatise.
2014/11/29 The Treaty
Power under the Constitution of the United States,
Robert T. Devlin, 1908. Early classic treatise.
with the Enemy in World War II, Martin Domke, 1943.
Review of cases.
2014/10/04 Money and
Civilization, Alexander del Mar, 1867. Early classic
2014/10/04 History of
Monetary Systems, Alexander del Mar, 1895. Early
2014/10/04 History of
Money in America, Alexander del Mar, 1899. Early
Law of Money, William Brough, 1896. Early classic
2014/10/04 Gold and
Silver Coinage under the Constitution, U.S.
Tender: A Study in English and American Monetary History,
S.P. Breckinridge, 1903.
2014/10/04 The First
and Second Banks of the United States, John Thom
Holdsworth, Davis Dewey, 1910.
Banking Before the Civil War, Davis Dewey; The
Safety Fund Banking System in New York: 1829-1866,
Robert Paddock, 1910.
2014/09/01 Observations on the new
Constitution, and on the Federal and State Conventions,
Columbian Patriot [Mercy Otis Warren], (1788) Opposition to
ratification of the U.S. Constitution without a bill of rights,
from a leading intellectual leader of the American Revolution.
2014/09/01 History of the rise, progress,
and termination of the American Revolution, Mercy
Otis Warren. (1805) History from one of the leading
intellectual leaders of the American Revolution.
Translations of the United States Constitution The
Constitution was translated from English into German and Dutch
at ratification, for the substantial number of people in
Pennsylvania and New York who did not speak English. This
document sets out the different texts and translations alongside
Treasury Reports, complete collection, 1789-1980.
2014/06/04 Politics and the English Language,
George Orwell (1946) Short essay on the political uses of
Propositions from Parliament to Charles I, and his answer,
(1642) Parliament demanded power from the king, and he made a
defense of mixed government. This was the break that led to the
English Civil War.
Rights in Early England, Christine G. Clark, Brigham
Young University Law Review 1, 1995.
2014/05/12 Journals of
the Continental Congress, 1774-1789 Government under the
Articles of Association and Articles of Confederation.
2014/05/11 What Is
Enlightenment?, Immanuel Kant tr. Mary C. Smith
2014/05/10 A Readable
Edition of Coke upon Littleton, ed. Thomas Coventry
(1830) Cleaned but with the margin notes omitted. HTML version
still needs some work.
2014/05/01 A Treatise
on the Constitutional Limitations Which Rest Upon the
Legislative Powers of The States of the American Union,
Thomas M. Cooley (1868) Commentary reflecting constitutional
thought at the time.
General Principles of Constitutional Law in the United
States of America, Thomas M. Cooley (1891)
Introduction by the leading constitutional scholar of his era.
2014/05/01 An Inquiry
into the Principles and Policy of the Government of the
United States, John Taylor (1814) A response to
John Adams' A Defense of the Constitutions of Government of
the United States of America by a leading theorist of the
2014/05/01 Letters of
Junius, Unknown (1767-72), Volume I Letters from
an English Whig and ally of Lord Camden against the efforts of
Lord Mansfield to restrict the role of juries, and on other
of natural law, Thomas Rutherforth (1754, Second
American ed. 1832) Lectures on Grotius De jure belli et
Dictionary, Jacob Giles, 6th Ed. 1750.
recommended to the Continental Congress Indicating what
works may have influenced the drafting of the U.S. Constitution
2014/04/20 Iberian Constitutional History,
600-1492. May have inspired development of constitutional
thought in England and other countries.
2014/04/06 Constitution of the Holy Roman
Empire, (962-1806) A dominant European nation that
was a confederation of states, headed by an elected monarch with
limited power. It's "constitution" provided some ideas to the
2014/04/05 Fonet: A new
phonetic alphabet for English Essential for spelling
2014/03/31 Dissoi Logoi:
Two-Fold or Contrasting Arguments, Anonymous (c. 425 BCE),
Presentation of the method of using opposing arguments to elicit
understanding, and as a tool of the sophists.
2014/03/30 Select Documents of English
Constitutional History, George Burton Adams and H.
Morse Stephens (1904) Collection of excerpts from the main
documents that comprise the English "constitution".
English Constitution, Walter Bagehot (1872)
Discussion of the English "constitution" as of that time.
2014/03/08 Statute of
Quo Warranto (1290) Codified the writ of quo
warranto as a pleading in English courts, and laid the
basis for the writ of habeas corpus.
2013/11/30 Swiss Federal
Charter (1291) The beginning of the Swiss federal
republic that inspired Locke's notion of the social contract and
the American Constitution.
2013/11/29 Union of
Utrecht, (1579, tr. Herbert H. Rowen 1972) Treaty that
formed the basis of the constitution of the United Provinces of
the Netherlands and was the inspiration for the American
Articles of Confederation.
2013/07/18 Brevissima Relacion, or Short
Report on the Destruction of the Indies, Bartolom
de las Casas (1474-1566) Spanish Dominican priest, early
champion of the rights of indigenous peoples. One-sided but
influential polemic that brought pressure to better treat Native
Americans and recognize natural rights of people everywhere.
2013/06/22 Elementary Catechism on the
Constitution of the United States, Arthur J.
Stansbury (1828) Q&A for the teaching of students.
2013/05/24 Early State
Constitutions State constitutions in use from
independence through adoption of the U.S. Constitution, for
which they served as models.
Augustalis, or, Constitutions of Melfi (1231) Holy
Roman Emperor Frederick II established basic laws for the
Kingdom of Sicily that provided model for later constitutions of
2012/09/03 Charter of
the Forest (Carta de Foresta) (1217) Henry III
established rights of freemen to use forest resources.
2012/05/23 Reforms of
Simon de Mortfort (1258-65) Had he not lost a battle,
his reforms might have ended monarchy and established republican
government four centuries before Cromwell and Lilburne.
and Resettlement Operations, U.S. Dept. of the
Army, FM 3-39.40, February, 2010 The manual outlines policies
for processing detainees into internment camps both globally and
inside the United States.
Grand Jury Standards, Jon Roland Specification for a
grand jury system to comply with original understanding of the
Revenue Regulations Through 2003.
Moneta, Nicholas Oresme, 1484. Translated from Latin
by Charles Johnson Classic treatise on money and coinage.
2011/01/09 The crisis: or, Essays on the
usurpations of the federal government, Robert James
Turnbull, Brutus (pseud.) (1827) Discusses the
misconstructions of the Constitution by the Supreme Court and
Congress from a Jeffersonian standpoint, and develops the
concept of state-level nullification.
Protection and Affordable Care Act. Act of Congress,
sometimes called "Obamacare", which threatens our constitutional
of jurisdiction, Jon Roland.
Tyranny and Your Income Tax, Jeffrey Dickstein, 1990, 2010
Review of leading cases, showing compensation for labor is not
"income" subject to taxation.
2010/07/13 Georgicum: or a supplement to the
mirror of justices; being an account of some instances of
the practice of former times, in order to the improvement of
justice and safeguard of the constitution, Anonymous
(1716) Recounts how corrupt judges were held accountable.
Opinion of the Virginia and Kentucky Resolutions, Frank
Maloy Anderson, The American Historical Review, No. 1,
pp. 45-63 (October 1899), and No. 2, pp. 225-252 (December 1899)
Review of reactions to those resolutions.
2010/02/18 Section 1706 Example of tax code being used to suppress small competitors.
2009/10/04 Lectures on
the Constitution Jon Roland, 2008-2009.
Congress 2009 Videos Including those from the Oct. 3,
2009, Meet the Candidates gathering at the Silver Eagle
Taphouse, McQueeney, Texas, and the Austin election Oct. 10,
of Judges, by Jon Roland Discussion of how judges are
2009/07/26 The Laws and Liberties of
Massachusetts, Excerpts (Adopted 1647, published 1648)
Codification of major parts of the common law that served as a
constitution for Massachusetts into the 18th century.
Amendments to U.S. Constitution A few amendments that
might help return constitutional construction to original
Affairs. Reports to the U.S. Congress on military
and militia matters. Volume 1 contains reports from Mar. 3,
1789, through Mar. 3, 1819. See particularly the reports on
militia organization and militia returns showing organization
and strength. Provides insight into original thinking on militia
and the right to keep and bear arms.
Procedure Links to resources on making decisions in
Articles of Interest. Check these for fidelity to their
State Legislative Rules of Procedure Rules for each
of Robert's Rules of Order, Revised First translation is
Unconstitutional: The Case Against Precedent Revisited,
Gary Lawson, 5 Ave Maria L.R. 1 (2007).
Constitutional Case Against Precedent, Gary Lawson, 17 Harv.
J.L. & Pub. Pol'y 23, 24 (1994).
Law Dictionary, 2nd Ed. 1910.
Power Satellites Solution to need for energy.
English Constitution, John Louis De Lolme (1771)
Discusses separation of powers, the jury system, and habeas
2008/01/04 Purchase Links for the Liberty
Library Convenient links to purchase print
editions of our online works.
2007/12/28 Letters of Marque and Reprisal Collection
of historical examples with analysis.
Reading Published works that discuss matters related to
the constitutional militia and the constitutional militia
States v. Fenwick, 25 F. Cas. 1062 (1836); 4 Cranch
C.C. 675 Defense in criminal trial has right to
argue law before jury until bench rules on motion.
v. United States, 22 F. Cas. 1322 (1839); 5 Cranch
C.C. 573 Defense in criminal trial has right to
argue law before jury until bench rules on motion.
the Constitutionality of the Independent Counsel Statute:
Executive Control over Criminal Law Enforcement: Some Lessons
from History, Harold J. "Hal" Krent, 38 Am. U.L. Rev.
275, Winter, 1989, Interesting review of private
criminal prosecutions in history.
2007/04/12 Revenue Act
of 1942 This was what first introduced withholding "tax"
Security Act of 1935 Compare to the present system.
2007/03/18 The Law That
Always Was, Vern Holland (1987) Treatise on the
legitimacy of the income tax.
2006/09/24 Works of James Wilson (1804) Includes "Lectures on Law, 1790-1792" and other
writings of the Pennsylvania delegate to the Constitutional
brief disquisition of the law of nature, according to the
principles laid down in the reverend Dr. Cumberland's (now
Lord Bishop of Peterborough's) Latin treatise on that
subject. As also his considerations of Mr. Hobbs's
principles put into another method., James Tyrrell
(1692) Disquisition on natural law theory.
Revenue Code 26 USC, as of January 1, 2002.
2006/02/01 Martyrdom of King Charles I, W.
Delavne (1703) Sermon before House of Commons. Comments on
some of the constitutional issues involved in the trial and
execution of that monarch.
2005/11/08 Presumption of Nonauthority and
Unenumerated Rights, by Jon Roland, Begun November 6,
2005, in progress.
(written ~1290, printed ~1530) Abridged, updated, more
readable, and more widely used codification based on Bracton,
originally in the French of the English court, reflecting
changes in the law, including changes in juries.
Codification of the Law Expedient?, by William B.
Hornblower. Address delivered before the American Social Science
Association (Department of Jurisprudence) at Saratoga, N.Y.,
September 6, 1888. Discussion of debate over whether and how
to adopt statutes that codify common-law judicial precedents.
Trial of Thomas Paine for a Libel, Thomas Paine.
(1792) British government prosecuted Paine for publishing Rights
Reconsidered, by Jon Roland Review of evidence for
arguing law in the presence of the jury.
2005/07/12 Address on Libels, Case of John
Horne, John Horne Tooke. (1777) Criticism of
indictment by information, rather than by grand jury. May have
contributed to requirement for grand juries in U.S. Bill of
2005/07/12 Observations on the Trial by Jury,
Attributed to John Longley. (1815) Commentary on the role of
the jury in Britain, reflecting the gain of the Mansfieldian
2005/07/12 Observations on the Trial by Jury,
Anonymous. (1803) Advice to the Pennsylvania Legislature on
the role of the jury.
2005/07/12 The Trial of Thomas Hardy for
High Treason. (1794) Provides insight into the
practice of law in England and the interplay of conflicting
2005/07/12 The Case, Trevett against Weeden,
for refusing Paper Bills in Payment. (1787) This
legal tender action may have inspired the prohibition in the
U.S. Constitution of states making anything but gold or silver
2005/07/12 The Trial at Large, ... In the
Nature of a Quo Warranto, Against Mr. Thomas Amery, , ... of
the City of Chester. (1786) This quo warranto action was submitted for decision by a jury.
2005/07/12 The Trial of John Almon,
Bookseller, ... For selling Junius's Letter. (1770)
Publication of the Letters of Junius was prosecuted as a
criminal libel of the English government.
2005/07/08 The Two Trials of John Fries for
Treason. (1800) Provides insight into the practice
of law in England and the interplay of conflicting political
2005/07/07 A Complete Collection of
State-Trials, and Proceedings For High-Treason, And
Other Crimes And Misdemeanours; From the Reign of King Richard
II to the Reign of King George II. in Six Volumes.
2005/07/07 The Present Practice of the Court
of Common Pleas, Joseph Harrison. (1761) Provides
insight into the early practice of law.
2005/07/07 The Attorney's Practice in the
Court of Common Pleas, Robert Richardson. (1778)
Provides insight into the early practice of law.
2005/07/07 The English Lawyer, showing the
Nature and Forms of Original Writs, Processes, and Mandates,
William Bohun. (1732) Provides insight into the early practice
2005/07/06 The Subject's Right of
Petitioning, Anonymous. (1703) Provides insight
into the original meaning of the right to petition.
2005/07/06 Tracts on
Political and Other Subjects, Joseph Towers (1796)
Followup on his earlier writings on the role of juries.
2005/07/06 Essays and
Treatises on Moral, Political, and Various Philosophical
Subjects, Emanual Kant (1798) Includes some of
Kant's lesser-known writings.
2005/07/06 Short Hints upon Levelling A
Charge to the Grand Jury of Middlesex, William
Mainwaring. (1791) Reveals Tory-Mansfieldian linking of jury
rights to fears of property re-distribution.
2005/07/06 Considerations on the Respective
Rights of Judge and Jury; Particularly upon Trials for Libel,
John Bowles. (1791) Leading exposition of the Mansfieldian
movement to curtail the role of juries, which spread to the
2005/07/06 A General Charge to All Grand
Juries, and Other Juries, James Astry. (1725)
Provides insight into the early role of juries.
2005/07/04 An Argument in Defence of the
Exclusive Right Claimed by the Colonies to Tax Themselves,
with a Review of the Laws of England, Relative to Representation
and Taxation, to Which is Added, an Account of the Rise of the
Colonies, and the Manner in which the rights of the subjects
within the realm were communicated to those that went to
America, with the exercise of those rights from their first
settlement to the present time. (1774) Arguments of English
members of Parliament who agreed with the protests of the
2005/07/04 An Analysis of the Laws of
England, William Blackstone. (1762) Commentary on
early English law.
Miscellaneous Works of J. J. Rousseau (1774)
Includes Social Compact and A Project for a
2005/07/04 The Dissertation of John Selden,
Annexed to Fleta. (1771) Commentary on early
2005/07/04 Appeal Brief in Matson v. Thomas,
John Valentine (1720) Oldest known legal brief in British
North America, got precedent that British colonists in North
America had inherited the rights of Englishmen, laying the
foundation for the American War of Independence.
Works of Edward Coke (~1628) Commentary on English
common and statutory law, including the Institutes and
2005/03/22 The Trial of John
Peter Zenger, 1735. 17 How. 675. The jury decided that
truth was a defense against libel.
Statutes at Large, complete collection, 1789-2007.
Code, partial collection, 1926
2005/03/13 Citizenship, U.S. War
Department Training Manual 2000-25 (1928) Civics textbook for
training Army troops.
Research by the use of Corpus Juris Secundum, Donald
J. Kiser (1924) Guide for students of the law.
2004/12/19 The Elements of the Common Lawes
of England, Francis Bacon (1630) Treatise on
English Common Law.
2004/12/16 An account of Denmark, as it was
in the year 1692, Robert Molesworth (1694)
Commentary on Denmark that is really a commentary on
constitutional issues in England.
American Manual, or, The Thinker, Joseph Bartlett
Burleigh (1854) Civics textbook focusing on U.S. Constitution.
into the Moral and Religious Character of the American
Government, H. W Warner (1838) Commentary on the
relation between government and religious practices.
2004/07/13 Cooper Union Address, Abraham Lincoln, February 27, 1860.
States Constitution, Jon Roland. Entry in Encyclopedia
of Leadership, Vol. 4, Ed. George R. Goethals, Georgia J.
Sorenson, & James MacGregor Burns, Sage Publications,
John of Salisbury (1159), various translations Argued that
citizens have the right to depose and kill tyrannical rulers.
Mechanism of the Modern State, John A.R. Marriott
(1927) An analysis of the British system of government
compared to other systems, especially those of ancient Athens,
Switzerland, and the United States.
2004/04/25 A Summary
of the Law of Contracts, C. C. Langdell. (1880)
Develops an interpretative approach to law based on private
(contract) law, from the formalist standpoint.
2004/04/25 A Brief
Survey of Equity Jurisdiction (Selections), C. C.
Langdell. (1908) Exposition from formalist standpoint.
2004/04/24 A Treatise
on the Conflict of Laws (Selections from), Joseph H.
Beale (1935) The topic is developed with a historical and
2004/04/19 The Nature of the Judicial
Process, Benjamin N. Cardozo (1921) Discusses the
debate between legal realists and constitutionalists.
2004/04/06 If It's Not a Runaway, It's Not a
Real Grand Jury, Roger Roots, Creighton L.R., Vol.
33, No. 4, 1999-2000, 821 Examines constitutional issues
involved in current practices involving grand juries.
2004/03/30 George Mason's Master Draft of the
Bill of Rights, 1788 June 9.
Lost History of the Ninth Amendment: The Lost Original Meaning,
by Kurt Lash, Professor of Law and W. Joseph Ford Fellow, Loyola
Law School, Los Angeles, Feb. 2004.
2004/03/01 Woe Unto You, Lawyers,
Fred Rodell, Professor of Law, Yale University, 1939
Criticizes the legal profession.
2004/01/10 WThe Constitution of the United
States, John Randolph Tucker (1899) Commentary by
the grandson of the editor of Tucker's Blackstone.
2003/12/02 Are Cops Constitutional?, Roger
Roots, Seton Hall Constitutional L.J. 2001, 685
Examines constitutional issues involved in professional law
Liberty Judicially, Thomas James Norton (1928)
Examines how courts have gone along with departures from
Ligatures Tables of ancient and medieval character
combinations and abbreviations, useful for rendering manuscripts
into Greek fonts.
2003/09/24 De jure
magistratuum (On the Rights of Magistrates),
Theodore Beza (1574) Swiss Calvinist theologian, Knox's
co-pastor in Geneva, argues that lower level magistrates have
duty to defend people from higher level magistrates.
2003/09/16 On Misreading John Bingham and the
Fourteenth Amendment, Richard L. Aynes, Yale Law
Journal, October, 1993, Page 57 Argues that the
Fourteenth Amendment was understood by its authors and ratifiers
as extending the jurisdiction of U.S. Courts over cases between
a citizen and his state over rights protected in the U.S.
2003/09/14 A Treatise on American
Citizenship, John S. Wise (1906) Discussion of the
history and principles of various kinds of citizenship.
2003/09/11 Liberty, Metaphor, and Mechanism:
"checks and balances" and the origins of modern
constitutionalism, David Wootton (2003). (In MS Word
version, click on an endnote exponent to open the endnotes
History of the Common Law of England, Matthew Hale
(1713) Important reference for the Founders.
2003/08/19 The Path of the Law, Oliver
Wendell Holmes, Jr., 10 Harvard Law Review 457 (1897) Classic
statement of the doctrine of legal realism, that the "law" is
what judges do, or can be expected to do, rather than what is
logically required from first principles or historic enactment
of black letter law.
2003/06/23 Journal of
William Maclay Maclay served as senator from
Pennslyvania from 1789 to 1791 and kept a private journal of his
experiences that is highly revealing.
Complex Networks in Constitutional Republics, by Jon
Roland Examines how changing network structures can reveal how
political and economic processes behave and misbehave.
2003/06/10 Fairfax County Resolves (1774)
Developed the issues that led to the Declaration of
View of the Late War between the States, Alexander
Stephens (1868) Vice-President of the Confederacy explains why
the war was fought.
2003/05/31 Abuse of
Judicial Discretion, Jon Roland.
Plato (~348 BCE) Model laws for a republic, including
sortition and militia.
2003/05/21 A Short
Treatise on Political Power, John Ponet (1556)
Argues political power is limited by natural law, and no ruler
may exercise absolute power.
on the Constitution and Government of the United States,
John C. Calhoun.
2003/04/24 Still the Law of the Land? Essays on Changing Interpretations of the Constitution.
Forward by Forrest McDonald. 1987. Hillsdale College Press.
2003/03/23 An Essay on the Laced monian
Government, Walter Moyle (1698) How the Spartan
constitution given by Lycurgus inspired English political
on the Constitutionality of the President's Proclamations,
John Henderson (1854) Commentary on executive orders.
on the Causes of the Greatness of the Romans and their
Decline, Charles Montesquieu (~1734) Historical
analysis that laid the basis for his Spirit
of Laws and Gibbon's Decline and Fall of the
2003/02/17 Lopez Speaks, Is Anyone Listening?,
David B. Sentelle DC Circuit Justice reviews reception to U.S.
v. Lopez. 45 Loy. L. Rev. 541, Fall, 1999.
Essays: On the Foundation of Civil Government, On the
Constitution of the United States, Thomas Cooper
(1826) Commentary on constitutional theory.
Leveller Movement, Theodore Calvin Pease (1916) A
study in the history and political theory of the English Great
Human Rights in the Constitution of 1787, Zechariah
Chafee, Jr. (1956) Historical analysis of free debate,
prohibition of bills of attainder, and freedom of movement.
Blackstone The Commentaries on the Laws of
England by William Blackstone was the canonical
codification of the Common Law, but it needed to be adapted to
the needs of the U.S. Constitution. This was done in 1803 by St.
George Tucker, one of the Founders, who republished the
Commentaries, and added commentaries of his own, making the
2003/01/10 The Civil
Law, tr. & ed. S. P. Scott (1932) Includes the
classics of ancient Roman law: the Law of the Twelve Tables (450
BCE), the Institutes of Gaius (180), the Rules of Ulpian (222),
the Opinions of Paulus (224), the Corpus Juris Civilis of Justinian (533), which codified Roman Law, and the
Constitutions of Leo.
2003/01/02 The Common Law, Oliver
Wendell Holmes, Jr. Discussion of some but not all of the
elements of the Anglo-American common law.
and the Administrative State Questions of the legitimacy
of delegations of legislative powers to executive branch
2002/12/19 Case of the
Imprisonment of Edward Bushell, for alleged misconduct
as a Juryman, 1670. 22 Charles II. 6 How. 999. Having failed to
convict Penn, the prosecution sought to punish the jurors, but
failed, thereby establishing the right and duty of juries to
judge the law as well as the facts in criminal trials.
2002/12/19 The Trial of William
Penn and William Mead, at the Old Bailey, for a Tumultuous
Assembly, 1670. 22 Charles II. 6 How. 951. Established the right
2002/12/04 Principles of Constitutional
Interpretation, Jon Roland
2002/12/02 Sortition for Judges, by Jon
Sortition Option Articles and links on this method.
Works of Marchamont Nedham (~1650) English columnist
comments on political issues of his era.
2002/08/04 WIntroduction to the Study of the
Law of the Constitution, Albert Venn Dicey (8th Ed.,
1914) Comparative analysis of the constitutional orders of
several nations, focusing on Britain.
2002/08/04 Lex, Rex
(The Law is King), Samuel Rutherford (1644)
Theological arguments for the rule of law over the rule of men.
Textbook Review Efforts to reform the ways textbooks are
General Principles of Constitutional Law in the United
States of America, Thomas M. Cooley (1891)
Introduction by the leading constitutional scholar of his era.
Evolution of the Constitution of the United States,
Sydney George Fisher (1897). Traces each of the clauses of the
U.S. Constitution back to previous colonial, state and other
2002/06/25 A Constitutional History of the
United States, Andrew McLaughlin (1936) Perhaps
the best single textbook on the subject, winner of the 1936
Documents on Federal Relations, Herman V. Ames
(1911) Debates among the states on the Constitution,
Contrued and Constitutions Vindicated, John Taylor
(1820) A commentary on some of the misconstructions of the
Constitution by the Marshall Court.
Unmasked, John Taylor (1821) An attack on the
constitutionality of protective tariffs and other violations of
the original understanding of the Constitution, as seen by the
leading spokesman for the Jeffersonian "Old Republicans".
Healing Question, Sir Henry Vane (1656) He was tried for
writing this in a famous trial that tested the right of free
2002/05/07 A Dissertation on the Nature and
Extent of the Jurisdiction of the Courts of the United
States, Peter Stephen Du Ponceau (1824) Discusses
the various kinds of jurisdiction, in locum, in
personam, and in subjectam materiam, and the
limits of the jurisdictions of each kind of court.
2002/05/05 A Brief View of the Constitution
of the United States, Peter Stephen Du Ponceau
(1831) Introduction to the Constitution for students and
2002/04/18 Union Now,
Clarence K. Streit (1939) Classic treatise on international
conflict and federalism.
2002/04/14 Discourse on Voluntary Servitude,
tienne De La Bo tie (1548, tr. Harry Kurz 1942) People are
ultimately responsible for their servitude, and non-violent
resistance can win their freedom.
2002/04/10 A living
constitution or fundamental law?, Herman Belz (1998)
American constitutionalism in historical perspective.
2002/03/09 Cato (A Tragedy in Five Acts), Joseph Addison (prem. 1713)
Play about Cato the Younger, which inspired the Founders,
especially George Washington.
Student Council, Harry C. McKown (1944) Classic
treatise on the subject that the webmaster used to draft a
student constitution in high school.
Principles, Herbert Spencer (1862-99) Spencer sets
forth the fundamentals of his philosophic views.
Libel and the Duty of Juries, Joseph Towers (1764, 1784),
Francis Maseres (1792) Three essays on the right of
defendants, especially in criminal libel cases, to have the jury
decide the law as well as the fact issues.
Elements of the Art of Packing, As Applied to Special
Juries, Particularly in Cases of Libel Law, Jeremy
Bentham (written 1809, published 1821) Critical treatise on
abuses of the English jury system and ways to reform it, which
provides a historical background to practices that continue to
this day. The first publisher in 1817 of excerpts from this work
was prosecuted twice for doing so, and the second three times,
but in each attempt, juries acquitted them.
2002/01/07 Sources of
the Constitution of the United States, C. Ellis
Stevens (1894) Traces each of the key provisions of the
Constitution and Bill of Rights to their historical sources.
2001/12/20 The Law of
Treason in the United States, James Willard Hurst
(1945, 1971) The Constitution imposes strict limits on what
can be punished and how it can be proven.
Law of Treason, Introduction by Jon Roland,
Published in University of West Los Angeles Law Review,
Vol. 34, 2002.
of Criminal Laws, Edward S. Stimson (1936)
Jurisdiction for a criminal offense is limited to the territory
where the offender is when the offense is committed, not where
the effects occur.
New Organon (Novum Organum), Francis Bacon (1620),
tr. Spedding. et al. Includes The Great Instauration and Preparative toward a Natural and Experimental History
Concerning Government, Algernon Sidney (1698)
Built principles of popular government from foundation of
natural law and the social contract.
2001/09/10 Patriarcha, Robert Filmer
(1680) This defense of absolute monarchy provoked Locke and
Sidney to write their major works.
Constitutional Documents of the Puritan Revolution:
1625-1660, Samuel Rawson Gardiner, ed. (1906) The
English "commonwealth" led by Cromwell didn't endure, but many
of its ideas did.
Views of the Constitution of the United States, John
Taylor (1823) A discourse on the constitutional nature of the
American union reflecting views of Jefferson and Madison.
Political Writings of Voltaire, (~1764) Includes The
Philosophy of History and A Treatise on Toleration.
Republica Anglorum, Thomas Smith (1565, 1583)
Written while he was ambassador to France, describes the
constitution of England under Elizabeth I in a way that
indicates tendencies toward republican ideals.
American Republic: its Constitution, Tendencies, and Destiny,
O. A. Brownson (1866) Argument against secession,
distinguishes the constitution of government from the underlying
constitution of the society, and territorial from socialistic or
2001/07/24 Utilitarianism, John
Stuart Mill (1863) Ethical theory that formed the basis for
his political theory.
Johannes Althusius (1614, Abr. & tr. Frederick S. Carney)
First presented a comprehensive theory of federal republicanism
based on a covenantal model of human society.
Political Works of John Milton Includes Areopagitica (1644), Tenure of Kings and Magistrates (1649), and Defense
of the People of England (1651).
2001/06/11 Sources of
English Constitutional History: 600-1937, Carl
Stephenson & Frederick George Marcham (1937) Collection of
the documents that define the English "constitution".
Origins of Modern Constitutionalism, Francis D.
Wormuth (1949) Historical analysis of the key constitutional
Elements of Law Natural and Politic, Thomas Hobbes
(1640) Discussion of the natural law foundations of
Law of War and Peace, Hugo Grotius (1625) Sets out
principles of natural law and the laws of nations.
2001/02/14 Against Writs of Assistance,
James Otis, 1761 February 24
on Government, John C. Calhoun (1831)
2001/01/31 Constitutionalism: Ancient and
Modern, Charles Howard McIlwain (1947) Discourse
on the origins and development of constitution theory.
Principles of Morals and Legislation, Jeremy Bentham
(1781) Introduced utilitarianism, to provide a better
theoretical foundation for penal statutory law than natural law
Crimes and Punishments, Cesare Beccaria (1764) Set
out rights of the accused in criminal proceedings. Argues for
crime prevention over punishment, and against the death penalty
Works, Harvey Wheeler Papers on Francis Bacon and
constitutional history and law.
2000/09/24 Intent of the Fourteenth Amendment
was to Protect All Rights, Jon Roland
Revival of Natural Law Concepts, Charles Grove
Haines (1930) Review of natural law theory as the foundation
of constitutional law.
Principles of Natural and Politic Law, J. Burlamaqui
(1748, tr. Thomas Nugent 1752) Commentary on the natural law
ideas of Grotius, Hobbes, Puffendorf, Barbeyrac, Locke, Clarke,
of Rebellion, by William O. Douglas Supreme Court
justice reveals the breadth and depth of official corruption and
abuse of constitutional rights and limits on powers.
2000/06/14 Public Safety
or Bills of Attainder?, Jon Roland. Published in University
of West Los Angeles Law Review, Vol. 34, 2002.
the Reformer, Ralph Waldo Emerson (1841).
Se Handbook Local copy of guide available from here.
the Duty of Man and Citizen According to Natural Law,
Samuel Pufendorf (1673, 1682 tr. Frank Gardner Moore) Based
law and right on natural law.
2000/03/25 Art of War, Sun Tzu
(475-221 BC) Maxims for military strategists.
2000/03/24 Plato Redivivus, Henry
Neville (1681) Argued for limits on the powers of government.
Works of Thomas Jefferson Includes complete Writings
of Thomas Jefferson, Albert Ellery Bergh, ed., 19
Works of Walter Moyle, (~1696-1721, pub. 1796) Includes Constitution of the Roman State, a commentary on English
constitutional issues from a Whig perspective.
Amendment Law Library Scholarly articles, federal and
supreme court decisions, and legal briefs.
Works of the Levellers (1645-9) Militia leaders who
sought legal reforms later sought by the American Revolution and
embodied in the U.S. Constitution and Bill of Rights. Includes An
Agreement of the Free People of England, an early attempt
at a republican constitution.
Manifesto, Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels (1848)
Statement of their objectives.
Man versus the State, Herbert Spencer (1884) How
the servants try to become the masters and majorities become
Doctrine of Fascism, Benito Mussolini (1932)
Provided tyranny a formal doctrine.
Thomas More (1516) Satirical analysis of shortcomings of his
society and a vision of what could be.
Moral Equivalent of War, William James (1906)
Seeks solution to problem of how to sustain political unity and
civic virtue without war or a credible threat.
Political Works of Richard Price Includes Civil
Liberty (1776) and Importance of the American
Books of the Commonwealth, Jean Bodin (~1590 tr.
Richard Knolles 1606, tr. & abr. M.J. Tooley 1955)
Originated modern ideas of sovereignty, the state,
2000/01/13 Relectiones, Franciscus
de Victoria (lect. 1532, first pub. 1557) Includes De
Indis and De iure belli, arguing for humane
treatment of native Americans and of enemies in war, providing
the basis for the law of nations doctrine.
the Constitution, Thomas James Norton (1950)
Constitutional scholar examines departures from constitutional
compliance arising from New Deal.
1999/11/05 The Virginia Report, J.W.
Randolph, ed. (1850) Documents and commentary arising out of
the controversies attending the Alien and Sedition Acts,
including the Kentucky Resolutions of 1798 and 1799 and
the Virginia Resolution of 1798, which set forth the
"Doctrine of '98" concerning constitutional interpretation, and
led to the "Revolution of 1800", the dominance of the
Jeffersonians, and the demise of the Federalist Party.
of War, Niccol Machiavelli (1520) Argues for a
strong militia system.
on Livy, Niccol Machiavelli (1517) Argues for the
ideal form of government being a republic based on popular
consent, defended by militia.
Reports, by Benedict D. LaRosa Report on Ruby
Ridge, Mt. Carmel, and Davidian trial.
by James & Kenneth Collier Report of investigation of vote
fraud in the United States. Guide for how to conduct such
1999/09/17 Documentary History of the Bill of
Rights From the English Bill of Rights through the
proposed amendments of the state ratifying conventions to the
drafts debated in Congress before adopting the final version.
Treatises, James B. Whisker Standard references on
the subject. Includes The Militia(1992) and The
American Colonial Militia (1997).
1999/08/27 A Defense
of the Constitutions of Government of the United States of
America, John Adams (1787-89) Argued for a broad
interpretation of national powers. Comprehensive collection of
quotes from political philosophers and historians that
influenced the Founders.
Peace, Immanual Kant (1795) Further discussion of
natural right and the plan for peace.
of Public Law, Cornelius van Bynkershoek (1737)
Develops the law of nations and constitutional (public) law
beyond Grotius and Pufendorf.
Usurpation, Franklin Pierce (1908) Historical and
constitutional analysis of how corruption, zealotry, and
incompetence combined to violate the Constitution.
Constitution of the United States: Its History, Application,
and Construction, Chapter 5: Legislative Powers,
Chapter 25: Police Power, David K. Watson (1910) Comparison of
the powers of the national and state governments.
Contra Tyrannos (Defense of Liberty Against Tyrants),
"Junius Brutus" (Orig. Fr. 1581, Eng. tr. 1622, 1689) In 1683
it was ordered to be burned.
to the Metaphysics of Morals, Immanual Kant (1785),
tr. W. Hastie (1785).
Principles of the Metaphysics of Morals, Immanual
Kant (1785), tr. Thomas Kingsmill Abbott (1785).
Writings of Thomas Paine Includes Common Sense (1776) and Rights of Man (1792).
Works of Edmund Burke Commentary on the American and
French Revolutions and the political issues they raised.
Law of Nations, Emmerich de Vattel (1758) Based
constitutional and civil law on the law of nations.
Grand Jury, George J. Edwards (1906) Classical
treatise on the grand jury, unequalled to this day.
New Atlantis, Francis Bacon (1626) Utopian vision
of the new world.
Conventions, Roger Sherman Hoar (1917) Treatise on
the way a body politic manifests its sovereignty.
1999/06/17 A Discourse of Government with
Relation to Militias, Andrew Fletcher (1698)
Analyzes importance of the militia to legitimate government, law
enforcement, and national defense.
Cive (The Citizen), Thomas Hobbes (1641-47)
Discussion of the natural law foundations of government.
Changes in American Constitutional Theory, John W.
Burgess (1923) Constitutional scholar surveys departures from
constitutional compliance from 1898 through 1920.
1999/04/10 Selected Works of James Madison Selected writings bearing on constitutional interpretation.
Vindication of the Rights of Women, Mary
Wollstonecraft (1792) Set forth the arguments for women's
rights. Mother of Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley, the author of Frankenstein.
Essay on the History of Civil Society, Adam Ferguson
(1767) The evolution of societies and their forms of
Subjection of Women, John Stuart Mill (1869)
Argues for full equality of women.
1999/02/06 | A David
Hoffman, The Oklahoma City Bombing and the Politics of
Terror, 1998, Feral House Pr. Expos of the Oklahoma
1999/02/03 Manual of Parliamentary Practice,
Thomas Jefferson (1811).
Contracts, by George Mercier Presents interesting
theory of the legalistic fictions used by usurpers.
to render documents Short manual on scanning printed
documents and converting them into web pages.
Spirit of Laws, Charles de Montesquieu, (1748, tr.
Thomas Nugent 1752) Laid the foundations for the theory of
republican government, particularly the concepts of the
separation of powers into legislative, executive, and judicial,
a federal republic, representatives elected from political
subdivisions, a bicameral legislature, and a system of checks
Commonwealth of Oceana, James Harrington (1656)
Outline of a plan for republican government.
Social Contract, Jean Jacques Rousseau (1762)
Discussed legitimate government as the expression of the general
Discourse on Political Economy, Jean Jacques
Rousseau (1755) Discussion on the economic principles
affecting the politics of a society.
Discourse on the Origin of Inequality, Jean Jacques
Rousseau (1754) Discussion on political inequality, its
origins and implications.
Treatise, Baruch de Spinoza (1677) Constitutional
considerations of various forms of government, including ideas
that later influenced the Founders.
Cive (The Citizen), Thomas Hobbes (1641-47)
Discussion of the natural law foundations of government.
View of the Constitution, William Rawle (1829)
Early commentary on the Constitution and how it should be
interpreted. Made point that the Bill of Rights also applied to
the states, something that would later be denied, then partially
reassserted by the 14th Amendment and the doctrine of
of Hammurabi (~1700 BCE) Early Mesopotamian legal code
laid basis for later Hebraic and European law.
Debates in the Several Conventions on the Adoption of the
Federal Constitution, Jonathan Elliot (1836) A
collection of documents, including proceedings of the ratifying
the Original Contract, David Hume (1748) Discussed
the balance between coercion and consent in actual societies and
Aristotle (350 BC) Laid out the alternative forms of
Library of Constitutional Classics Gathers together
links to the classic literature on constitutional government,
either already on this site or planned for the future. May be
offered on a CD-ROM.
on American Law, by James Kent (1826) Kent's Commentaries succeeded Tucker's Blackstone by reformulating the
relevant content of Blackstone's Commentaries and
integrating Common Law with Constitutional Law up to that time.
The complete 5-volume work is being converted. Here is what has
been converted so far.
on the Constitution of the United States, by Joseph
Story (1833) Authoritative commentaries by an early Supreme
Court justice who helped shape interpretation of the
Constitution for the next century. The complete 3-volume work is
being converted. Here is what has been converted so far.
Notes on the Debates in the Federal Convention of 1787.
These are the proceedings of the Constitutional Convention held
in Philadelphia. an essential guide to interpreting the intent
of the Framers.
1996/09/29 Freedom's Frontier
Atlantic Union Now, by Clarence K. Streit Classic
treatise on international conflict and federalism. Also see a Review by Jon Roland.
1996/09/03 Robert's Rules of
Order Revised Online version of 1915 edition.
Essential manual for parliamentarians of deliberative
1996/08/26 Oklahoma City
Bombing, April 19, 1995 Page devoted to this atrocity.
Reports on possible exposure of the real culprits.
1996/08/18 U.S. National
Militia Directory Subsites for each state with links to
1996/08/17 The meaning
of the phrase "well-regulated" in the 2nd amendment, Brian T. Halonen
Dictionary, John Bouvier (1856). Also available as
two self-extracting executables: Part
1 and Part 2.
1996/07/02 Let's Revive Private Prosecutions by Jon Roland. Calls for use of private prosecutors in cases
of public corruption and abuse where public prosecutors
unwilling to prosecute.
1996/07/02 Brief on Private Prosecutions
Provides cites for recent cases involving use of private
1996/06/09 U.S. Citizen
Crime Prevention & Law Enforcement Directory Guide
to neighborhood watch, cellular on patrol, citizen police
academy, and related programs.
Radio & TV Directory Keep the talk hosts informed on
what is going on among reformers and dissidents.
1996/05/14 Constitution Violated,
Not Suspended Letter to Dr. Gene Schroder from Jon
Roland, May 14, 1995.
the Constitution Suspended? Article from The New American by Thomas A. Burzynski, Feb 5, 1996.
1996/05/12 Landmark U.S.
Supreme Court Decisions Selected decisions with
1996/05/05 Battle of
Athens Report of 1946 confrontation between militia of
McMinn County, Tennessee, and corrupt local officials.
1996/05/03 U.S. State
Constitutions and Web Sites Directory of links to all 50
Web sites, some local copies of state constitutions.
Constitutions Collection of links to national
constitutions, both remote and local.
1995/09/25 Jurisdiction over
Federal Areas within the States Report of the
Interdepartmental Committee for the Study of Jurisdiction over
Federal Areas within the States (1956).